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Alexander Kent

Alexander Kent was born Douglas Edward Reeman on 15 October, 1924 and died on 23 January, 2017. He used the pseudonym Alexander Kent to write historical fiction about the Royal Navy. His books are often set during either World War I or the Napoleonic Wars.

He was born in Thames Ditton and joined the Navy at the age of 16. He served during WWII and the Korean War and also worked for the Metropolitan Police and as a social worker. He wrote over 28 Richard Bolitho books and 30 novels over a period of 60 years.



Alexander Kent Books

  • ADNWJ
    Alexander Kent
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    It is January 1819, and Captain Adam Bolitho ships out from Falmouth bound for Freetown, on the old the slave coast of Africa. H.M.S. Onward carries sealed orders in the strongbox below deck. But why all the secrecy and apparent urgency? And why Onward, so soon after the Mediterranean, and that bloody action with Nautilus? On their way back into port having completed their mission, the crew of the Onward spy the debris of an allied frigate, destroyed as if taken by surprise. Bodies are strewn among the shark-infested waters and no enemy in sight. A single word frozen on the lips of the dead. Mutiny. The men begin to question who is friend and who is foe. All is not well aboard the Onward; envy and hunger for power consume some of the crew, but they must band together and risk their lives, in the name of the King. A searing and gripping tale of trouble on the high seas, and of the weakness of the human spirit, "In the King's Name" heralds the return of our greatest living maritime writer and the legendary Adam Bolitho. All is not well aboard the Onward; envy and hunger for power consume some of the crew, but they must band together and risk their lives together, in the name of the King. A searing and gripping tale of trouble on the high seas, and of the weakness of the human spirit, "In the King's Name" heralds the return of our greatest living maritime writer and the legendary Adam Bolitho.
  • AKHLM
    Alexander Kent
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    Colours Aloft!, the sixteenth Richard Bolitho novel, bears all the hallmarks of its best-selling predecessors. September 1803 Vice-Admiral Sir Richard Bolitho finds himself the new master of the Argonaute, a French flagship taken in battle. With the Peace of Armiens in ruins, he must leave the safety of Falmouth. What lies ahead is the grim reality of war at close quarters - where Bolitho who will be called upon to anticipate the overall intention of the French fleet. But the battle has also become a personal vendetta between himself and the French admiral who formerly sailed the Argonaute. Bolitho and his men are driven to a final rendezvous where no quarter is asked or given.
  • BDDIH
    Alexander Kent
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    In this, the long awaited conclusion of Alexander Kent's midshipman trilogy, the new year of 1774 seems to offer Richard Bolitho and his friend Martyn Dancer the culmination of a dream. Both have been recommended for promotion, although they have not yet gained the coveted lieutenant's commission. But a routine passage from Plymouth to Guernsey in an untried schooner becomes, for Bolitho, a passage from midshipman to King's officer, tempering the promise of the future with the bitter price of maturity.
  • AKHCT
    Alexander Kent
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    Another exciting Bolitho adventure! This fourteenth Bolitho novel has the epic scenes of action, the powerful characterization and the authentic period detail that have made Alexander Kent a bestseller wherever sea stories are read. After eight years of war between Britain and France there is at last a rumour of peace. But the old enemies are well aware that any settlement will be only a breathing space in which to recover from their terrible losses. To obtain the best terms the French muster a show of strength from Biscay to the Channel ports. At the British Admiralty there are some who see a daring opportunity to even the score at any negotiation table -- and who better to undertake it than the young Rear Admiral Bolitho! In June 1801 Bolitho's small squadron is still repairing the scars of battle earned at Copenhagen - and as he receives his orders from London Bolitho is, for the first time in his life, torn between the demands of duty and his real desire to marry. When the squadron sails it is joined by an additional ship, a frigate with many memories from the past. But where Bolitho's flag leads so his captains must follow, if necessary to the brink of disaster -- for theirs is a tradition of victory.
  • AJQPL
    Alexander Kent
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    March, 1811 After two and a half months of precious peace in Cornwall with his beloved mistress Catherine, Admiral Richard Bolitho is once again summoned to London. In defence of an Empire, the Admiralty must quell the unrest in America - or face the war with those who were once friends. For when diplomacy fails, the cannon will speak. For his daring mission, Bolitho must call on the loyalty of his most trusted officers - and the trust of those he loves the most. Distance too is their enemy, as the Indomitable leads the fleet from Plymouth towards the rich merchant grounds of the Americas. In the troubled seas from Antigua north to Halifax, Admiral Bolitho's revolutionary 'flying squadron' will face their first and harshest test. For a country's freedom. For a hero's right to turn his back on the sea ...
  • AKIHO
    Alexander Kent
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    A troubled peace with France means that in the harbours and estuaries around England, the royal fleet has been left to rot. Even a frigate captain as famous as Richard Bolitho is forced to swallow his pride and visit the Admiralty daily to plead for a ship. As the clouds of war begin to rise once more over the Channel, he has no choice but to accept an appointment to the Nore. With his small flotilla of three topsail cutters Bolitho sets out to search the coast for seamen who have fled the harsh discipline of His Majesty's Navy for the more tempting rewards of smuggling. But the 'Brotherhood' he comes up against are brutal and dangerous with a secret, sinister trade in human misery. Treason is never far distant and murder commonplace. So when a King's ransom is in peril and Bolitho is ordered to proceed 'with all despatch' to recover it he will need all the loyalty and courage of his three gallant cutters if he is to fulfil his mission.
  • BAWPM
    Alexander Kent
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    Returning safely to England after the dramatic capture of Martinque, Vice-Admiral Sir Richard Bolitho finds an all too brief respite from war and politics in the arms of his mistress Catherine Somervell. But the shadow of a new conflict already darkens the horizon. The old enemy, France, forges an uneasy alliance with America - threatening the safety of British trade routes. Although ordered immediately to the Indian Ocean, for the first time Bolitho's thoughts are not of glory but his own - and the Navy's - past. Both Nelson and Collingwood died in their country's service. For the navy's newest Admiral, is there life beyond the sea itself?
  • BJILC
    Alexander Kent
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    This work is set in June 1815. On the eve of Waterloo, a sense of finality and cautious hope pervade a nation wearied by decades of war. But peace will present its own challenge to Adam Bolitho, captain of His Majesty's Ship Unrivalled, as many of his contemporaries face the prospect of discharge. The life of a frigate captain is always lonely, but for Adam, mourning the death of his uncle Admiral Sir Richard Bolitho, that solitude acquires a deeper poignancy. He is, more than ever, alone, at the dawning of a new age for the Royal Navy, where the only constants are the sea and those enemies, often masked in the guise of friendship, who conspire to destroy him.
  • BIINZ
    Alexander Kent
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    It is February 1818, and Adam Bolitho longs for marriage and a safe personal harbour. But with so much of Britain's fleet redundant, he knows he is fortunate to be offered H.M.S. Onward, a new 38-gun frigate whose first mission is not war but diplomacy, as consort to the French frigate Nautilus. Under the burning sun of North Africa, Bolitho is keenly aware of the envy and ambition among his officers, the troubled, restless spirits of his midshipmen, and the old enemy's proximity. It is only when Nautilus becomes a sacrificial offering on the altar of empire that every man discovers the brotherhood of the sea is more powerful than the bitter memories of an ocean of blood and decades of war.
  • BAWTV
    Alexander Kent
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    Success to the Brave is the fifteenth Richard Bolitho story and chronologically it follows the events covered by A Tradition of Victory. In the spring of 1802 Richard Bolitho is summoned to the Admiralty in London and given his orders for a difficult and, to him, distasteful task. Even an advanced promotion to vice-admiral to make him one of the youngest ever appointed does not compensate for his sudden and thankless mission. Bolitho and his wife are expecting their first child, and for once he is loath to quit the land for the demands of duty. The Peace of Amiens, signed a few weeks earlier, is already showing signs of strain as the old enemies wrangle over the return of colonial possessions won and lost during the war. In the little sixty-four-gun Achates Bolitho sails West for Boston, and thence to the Caribbean where he must hand over the island of San Felipe to the French. Bolitho discovers that to be a man of diplomacy is not enough, and as threat and counter-threat weave a web of intrigue around his lonely command he balances success against the danger to the men who must follow him even to the cannon's mouth.
  • BJILB
    Alexander Kent
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    This work is set in Antigua 1817. Every harbour and estuary is filled with ghostly ships, the famous and the legendary now redundant in the aftermath of the war. In this uneasy peace, Adam Bolitho is fortunate to be offered the seventy-four gun Athena, and as flag captain to Vice-Admiral Sir Graham Bethune once more follows his destiny to the Caribbean. But in these haunted waters where Richard Bolitho and his 'band of brothers' once fought a familiar enemy, the quarry is now a renegade foe who flies no colours and offers no quarter, and whose traffic in human life is sanctioned by flawed treaties and men of influence. And here, and when Athena's guns speak, a day of terrible retribution will dawn for the innocent and the damned.
  • BJILI
    Alexander Kent
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    This work is set in March 1814. Admiral Sir Richard Bolitho returns to England from several months' rigorous patrolling off the North American coast. War with the United States has not yet ended, but news of Napoleon's defeat and abdication has stunned a navy and a nation bled by years of European conflict. Victory has been the impossible dream and now, for Bolitho, a vision of the future and a personal peace seems attainable. However an unsympathetic Admiralty dispatches him to Malta. In this appointment a compliment or a malicious ploy to keep Bolitho from the woman he loves and the freedom he craves? He cannot know, but the voice of duty speaks more insistently even than the voice of the heart, and in this familiar sea where both glory and tragedy have touched his life, Bolitho must confront the future, the renaissance of a hated tyrant, and the fulfilment of destiny.
  • BIIMJ
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    Richard Bolitho - Midshipman October 1772, Portsmouth. And sixteen-year-old Richard Bolitho waits to join the Gorgon ordered to sail to the west coast of Africa and to destroy those who challenge the King's Navy. For Bolitho, and for many of the crew, it is a severe and testing initiation into the game of seamanship. Midshipman Bolitho and the 'Avenger' December 1773, Falmouth. The young Bolitho looks forward to a family Christmas in Cornwall while the Gorgon is refitted. But Cornwall is the treacherous stamping ground of smugglers and wreckers. After the murder of a revenue officer, Bolitho is swept aboard his brother's cutter Avenger on a dangerous mission of hide and seek. Band of Brothers 1774 - the new year seems to offer Richard Bolitho and his friend Martyn Dancer the culmination of a dream. Both have been recommended for promotion, although they have not yet gained the coveted lieutenant's commission. But a routine passage from Plymouth to Guernsey in an untried schooner becomes, for Bolitho, a passage from midshipman to King's officer, tempering the promise of the future with the bitter price of maturity.